Atheism, obesity and genetic mutations

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Two of the major risk factors for becoming obese according to the Mayo Clinic are poor dietary choices and inactivity.[1] According to the Gallup Inc., "Very religious Americans are more likely to practice healthy behaviors than those who are moderately religious or nonreligious."[2]

Atheism and obesity

See also: Atheism and obesity

The current atheist population mostly resides in East Asia (particularly China) and in secular Europe/Australia primarily among whites.[3] Most atheists are East Asians (see: Asian atheism). See: Global atheism and Western atheism and race

As far as atheism and obesity, secular Europe and communist China have significant problems with obesity (see: Secular Europe and obesity and China and obesity). In addition, Australia has a significant problem with obesity (see: Australia, irreligion and obesity).

In the United States at the present time, the greater the degree of irreligiosity in a generation, the higher their obesity rate is.

For other factors related to atheism and obesity, please see: Atheism and obesity

Atheism, obesity and genetic mutations

See also: Atheists and genetic mutations

There is evidence supporting the position that atheists have a higher mutational load due to various factors (see: Atheists and genetic mutations).

As far as obesity and genetic mutations, the science journal International Journal of Molecular Sciences reported: "Obesity, caused mainly by chronic energy overload resulting from consumption of high-energy meals and reduced physical activity, and associated with oxidative stress and inflammation, has been recognized as a key factor inducing DNA damage and inhibiting DNA damage repair mechanisms, favoring accumulation of DNA damage, and leading to enhanced mutation rate and altering gene expression."[4]

While obesity is not primarily caused in the majority of cases by one's genes[5], the abstract for the medical journal article Genetic and Epigenetic Causes of Obesity published in the medical journal Adolescent Medicine: State of the Art Reviews reported:

Obesity is a complex, heritable trait influenced by the interplay of genetics, epigenetics, metagenomics and the environment. With the increasing access to high precision diagnostic tools for genetic investigations, numerous genes influencing the phenotype have been identified, especially in early onset severe obesity. This review summarizes the current knowledge on the known genetic causes of obesity and the available therapeutic options. Furthermore, we discuss the role and potential mechanism of epigenetic changes that may be involved as mediators of the environmental influences and that may provide future opportunities for intervention.[6]


  1. Causes of obesity
  2. Very Religious Americans Lead Healthier Lives, Gallup Poll, 2010
  3. A surprising map of where the world’s atheists live, By Max Fisher and Caitlin Dewey, Washington Post, May 23, 2013
  4. Obesity, DNA Damage, and Development of Obesity-Related Diseases by Marta Włodarczyk and Grażyna Nowicka, International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 2019 Mar; 20(5): 1146.
  5. Causes of obesity
  6. GENETIC AND EPIGENETIC CAUSES OF OBESITY by Vidhu V. Thaker, MD, Adolescent Medicine: State of the Art Reviews, 2017 Fall; 28(2): 379–405.